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Journal Entries posted by JTO

  1. JTO
    There seems to be a growing corporate strategy for NGC to focus on the Non-US market over the US and leave the US to PCGS.  I may be wrong and this is in no way a dump on NGC (you can read my laudatory comments about Mark Salzberg and NGC in the "A SLQ Problem Coin's Journey to Righteousness" journal thread.)  https://www.ngccoin.com/boards/blogs/entry/292-a-slq-problem-coins-journey-to-righteousness/
    It appears that while NGC is increasing its investments in the international market it is not doing as much on upgrading the U.S. platform.  The data I use to make the conclusion that NGC is shifting their focus to the Non-US market over the US is based on 1) they dumped all PCGS coins out of existing "World" slots, years ago. 2) The registry no longer starts with US coins but it takes an egalitarian approach to all countries listing coins alphabetically by nation (I start each of my "registry encounters" with Albania.) 3) While they have decreased their presence at US shows (Long Beach etc.) they have increased their presence internationally.  This includes both a greater presence at international shows and NGC has opened new "bricks and mortar" Centers in many other countries especially in Asia.  This "corporate approach" is probably working as they seem to be the dominant grading service for both World and Ancient coins.  Their volume has increased particularly in Asian paper money.
    With regard to the registry platform the registry navigation drives me crazy.  When I finish working on my Complete Standing Liberty Quarter (SLQ) set and want to go back to Quarters to work on my "one per date" SLQ set or Early Quarters set and use the back navigation button on the browser, the browser does not go back to the Quarter's registry page but back to the first page of the NGC Registry (Albania.)  I met with the NGC staff at a FUN show and explained this problem and they were clearly aware of as they said that others had complained as well.  Alas 2 years and no fix and you cannot "bookmark” page 2, 3 or 8 even as a go around.  If you bookmark page 6 the Registry opens to the first page (Albania.) 
    I believe in NGC and find their grading more consistent and fair than PCGS.  I much prefer dealing with Mark Salzberg over David Hall. I remember when Heritage Auction was more ANACS than PCGS or NGC.  Then ANACS slowly disappeared and it was NGC and PCGS.  Now, for U.S., coins I am seeing a decrease in NGC leaving PCGS alone.  I hope NGC does not abandon the U.S. market by default (by not focusing their prime effort in the U.S. market and shifting it to the World market.)  As I said I believe in and prefer NGC.   NGC brought me the Edge View which brings some coins to life.  NGC, for the most part, photographs every coin that they grade (PCGS does not.)   That photo can help you recover a stolen coin (I have done it.)   These efforts by NGC are what sets them as the market leader regardless of who was first to slab a coin (PCGS 1986 and NGC 1987) or who the Investor Class prefers.  Please don't leave U.S. NGC!

  2. JTO
    Here is a coin that I paid a whopping $360 for, obviously in 2002.  I was proud of my find because all the other bidder appeared to be bidding on the holder not the coin.  The value of a 1908 with "Motto" is, or was higher than the no motto variety.  I paid $40 under greysheet for th coin which was about par for the with motto variety at the time.  I took it to the PCGS booth at Long Beach and they aggressively offered to reholder the coin for free, I passed.  So the coin sits misunderstood by its holder.  I actually have a collection of these and in my experience I have had a easier time finding error PCGS than NGC coins.  This is a satirical post bout PCGS for those that are wondering what I am talking about.  The motto is on the reverse just above the sun and the holder clearly says that there is no motto, a motto that Theodore Roosevelt felt violated the separation of Church and State.  Next a 1849 Gold dollar in an open wreath holder with a close wreath.

  3. JTO
    What a journey this coin has had.  I bought it from Stacks in March 2012 as: "1923-S Standing Liberty Quarter. AU Details--Environmental Damage (PCGS)."  I looked at the coin as said I just don't see the damage but I do see a full head.  I bid up to $1,375.00 for the problem coin and took it home.  Then I CAREFULLY conserved to coin.  About a year later at Long Beach I took it to PCGS (because NGC had no at show grading) and  show graded it.  It came back in a PCGS AU-58 FH.  I was quite pleased with myself.  Subsequently, as the war between NGC and PCGS got going I decided to cross it to NGC.  So, at the 2015 FUN show I decided to wait in line to "Ask the Expert" (Mark Salzberg) who opined that the coin should not be in an AU holder.  I told him that a 60 something without full head was a loss to me, as I cared more about the FH designation than the grade.  He said it was clearly a full head and he wrote on the holder MS-61 FH and signed his name,  I asked, meekly, if the coin might still come back in a "details" or non-FH holder?  Salzberg patiently explained that what he wrote would be the grade period, he is the final word at NGC.  I must say he was kind and respectful and his passion and care for the hobby came through clearly.  So the journey for this coin has been:...Raw to PCGS AU details environmental damage... to PCGS AU-58 FH and finally thanks to Mr Salzberg... it rests for good in an NGC MS-61 FH.  The pictures are here you be the judge...

  4. JTO
    The "journals" are worse not better.  The registry is also worse and I have cut my time there by 80% (maybe a good thing?)  NGC has taken the "high road" out of town and left us, the collectors, behind.  Why do I have to go to page 4 to find my U.S. coins?  The time is ripe for a Third, Third party to open a user friendly Registry for us "the collector" that serve as the fuel for the hobby.  Maybe the ANA, hint , hint...
    A good registry is like a virtual Dansco or Whitman album, with holes to fill and eventually the joy of completing a set.  This is where NGC had a huge advantage toward participation.  Most serious collector have a mix of PCGS and NGC.  In auctions of US coins, currently, the ratio of PCGS coins to NGC is about 3 to 4 to 1 .  For world coin auctions it is reversed with NGC dominating by up to 10:1. That maybe why NGC is putting the world coins in front of U.S. on their Registry.   Is NGC giving up on the U.S. market?
    Here is what I see as a solution, after having several PCGS coins returned that would not cross ( AFTER NGC GOT THE GRADING FEE) I had an idea.  If NGC is so much purer and dedicated to truth and honesty then here is an idea:
    Submit PCGS coins to NGC to cross (full fee) or just to grade (like the GSA coins.)  These coins have no guarantee from NGC if they are left in the PCGS holder, they just get a grade.  Because they are still in the PCGS holder they:
    1) Don't get included in the NGC population report
    2) The NGC grade is affixed to the PCGS holder so the coin can be used in the NGC registry
    3) NGC has no liability as they do not provide a guarantee (as stated in the small print by NGC on both GSA and Ancient coins)
    4) If the coin is sent in for only an NGC grade but not gross over (the GSA treatment by request) the fee could be reduced (again NGC is not providing a guarantee)
    (About the guarantee, most of you already know all of this but for those that don't, here it is.)The guarantee is what you pay for.  Yes they are guaranteeing the grade in an NGC holder but the big money is in the guarantee the the coin is not a counterfeit.  PCGS has certified at least 2 counterfeit coins that they placed into their holders within the last two years.   If a person buys that coin, in the original PCGS holder without evidence of tampering, they can go to PCGS and expect to be reimbursed for their loss (the fair market value of the coin.)  The grade guarantee is much more difficult to "prove" unless it is a "Red" copper that has turned brown, which is why they don't guarantee color on copper anymore.
    This would bring me back to NGC and I would be willing to pay to get my PCGS coins on the NGC registry (which I liked better before).
    But it is hard to look at a Liberty V in a PCGS MS-66 holder that NGC would not cross and then resubmit to cross at MS-65 or 64,  Would you do it?
  5. JTO
    Was this done to damped the dissatisfaction with NGCs recent changes?
    It occurs to me that one reason that the "comments" option was removed was to dampen/minimize the voice of those of us who are unhappy with the changes that NGC has made recently. Most significantly the decision to no longer allow PCGS coins on the NGC registry. This was obviously a business decision made at the top level of NGC. Presumably the thought is that people will start crossing there coins over to NGC to continue with this registry.
    It is my opinion that this was clearly true for the world coins. However, NGC was clearly superior to PCGS in grading world coins. That is not the case with US coins. The reality is whether we like it or not, US coins in PCGS holders statistically bring in more money for the same grade at auction.
    Because NGC included both their coins and PCGS, I viewed NGC as the better of the 2 registries. In my opinion it showed that NGC was more committed to the collector than just the bottom line profit. As a result I would submit coins to be graded preferentially by NGC. I loved the Versatility of the NGC Registry, But no more.
    I have met and interacted directly with the top person at both NGC and PCGS. I found Mark S. Of NGC to be thoughtful, considerate and insightful. He struck me as a collector, who understands collectors, and was consistently trying to do the right thing. On the other hand, David H. seemed to be arrogant, condescending and made it clear during the Meet the Expert that his time was more valuable than any of the people that he was meeting. In one instance while he was conducting a Meet the Expert session he was spending more time talking to John Dannreuther (a really nice man) about where to put in Coin Facts than he did to the people waiting and line. The title of one of his first books, in my opinion, is the best illustration of his approach to us lowly collectors... The Mercenarys Guide to the Rare Coin Market c1987. I just expected more from NGC, Oh Well.

  6. JTO
    The number of replies gives a barometer of the value of the journal post.
    I too was saddened by the removal of the reply option on the Recent Journals section that were posted on the left side of the registry screen. I would gauge the quality of one of my posts based on the number of replies it received. I don't want to go searching through the chat rooms nor will I. I really enjoyed some of the posts, especially those with pictures, There on the left of my registry Control Panel screen each day. Now that I cannot reply I find that I don't pay as much attention to the posts, because why should I? No it is not just about what I have to say. I really enjoyed the back-and-forth discussions that were frequently engendered by an excellent post. It gave collectors the chance to interact with some of the finest Numismatic researchers of our day (i.e. RWD: Roger W. Burdette).
    PCGS is gone. Fine, that was a business decision, but I did you have to cheapen the Recent Journals section. Is it to save money? If not as one user I will say that the change has made the Recent Journals section worse, less than it was, not as good as it had been and for what I ask?
    Please put it back. Otherwise is just one more reason not to mess with the whole registry game on NGC.
  7. JTO
    Has NGC begun net grading coins?
    First, I apologize for the delay in posting the results, I am a working guy and cut busy with my "day job".
    Thank you all for your thoughtful and insightful comments. Many of you identified correctly that there are rim bumps at the 11 o'clock position and 2 o'clock position.
    My dilemma is this: Based on all of the grating standards that I've been able to find this coin should grade VG and could possibly even grade Fine. My understanding is that the grade is based primarily on the amount the coin's wear. In different series the sharpness of strike also plays a role usually to add a positive attribute if the coin is well struck (i.e. full head designation for Liberty Standing Quarters, full split bands for dimes, full bell lines for Franklin half dollars...)
    The conundrum for me is that both PCG S and NGC state that they do not "net grade" coins. If the coin is a problem coin then it is listed as "unable to grade" and then assigned a "Details Grade" using the adjective (i.e. VG details) without a numerical score. This allows "problem coins" to be used in the NGC registry. There "problem coins" are given a value of one half of the lowest number for the category (for example a corroded coin that has uncirculated details gets one half of the score a "no problem" MS--60 coin would get. For people new to the hobby the ANACS historically would take into account problems and assign a "net grade" based on the underlying grade of the coin and the severity of the problem.
    Although the difference is minor, as I looked at the coin I saw a Very Good or maybe even Fine-12 coin that was under graded. Now I am curious as to whether in fact NGC assigned a "net grade" based on a Very Good to Fine coin with rim damage. If so based on their grating policy they should have called the coin out as a problem coin and assigned to details grade.
    I welcome your input as to whether I should return the coin to NGC to be re-graded. In my opinion it is clearly better than a "Good--6" unless they're calling it a problem coin in which case that should have been stated on the holder.
    Again I thank you for your thoughtful comments and I await your insights.

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  8. JTO
    I bought this coin and I wanted your opinion: what numerical grade would you give (1-70 Sheldon Scale).
    This coin is certified by NGC (not a Problem, Details, or No Grade coin). The grade assigned puzzles me and I would be interested in the collective wisdom of the group. I will post the grade, photo of the coin in holder, once I give you all a chance to vote on the grade you would assign as a grader for NGC or PCGS. If you think that the grade would be different between the two major services I would be interested in your opinion on that as well.
    Thank you for looking and please vote if you have an opinion.

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  9. JTO
    A shattered 1797 Half Cent
    Here is s coin with a well recognized repunched date (1 over 1). I am curious as to what the markings are to the right of the upper 1. Are they the remnants of the re-punched date? There does not appear to be anything on the reverse to explain them as die clashes.
    It also has evidence of several major obverse die cracks. Die crack #1 that runs from just before 12 O'clock to Miss Liberty's hairline. A second die crack (#2) from just after 12 O'clock runs in a wandering line across the anterior aspect of her hair line behind her forehead and then extends down through Miss Liberty jaw. the third crack (#3) extends from near 12 O'clock past the right side of the "E" in Liberty then passed the front of her face where it reconnects with missed Liberty and comes out of her nose and then continues down diagonally to approximately 4 O'clock. Another more subtle crack (#4)appears to go from approximately 2 O'clock just to the left of the Y in Liberty and then intersects Miss Liberty at her temporal scalp line. Finally there is what I believe is a die clash that extends from perpendicular to crack #3 and extending the intersection of the pole and Liberty's neck.

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  10. JTO
    I think starting competitive sets for so-called dollars would be a win-win for collectors and NGC alike.
    Coins that are at the top grades for their type, date, and mint mark are becoming quite expensive, whether they are modern issues or 18th Century coins. So-Called Dollars have remained relatively affordable even or top population coins. NGC is a leader in grading these coins in assigning the appropriate Hibler and Kappen (HK) designation. By opening repetitive sets in So-Called Dollars NGC would open the Registry to more people and allow for serious competition with a lower price tag.
    The above description is how the collector would benefit. I think that the Numismatic Guarantee Corporation would benefit by #1) like world coins making this in NGC only registry, #2) would encourage the submission of So-Called Dollars that are not currently graded to NGC and #3) would step ahead of their major competitor, as they have in world coins, with So-Called Dollars.
    Just a thought after I purchased the 1901 Pan American Exposition official medical (So-Called Dollar HK--289). I made the purchase simply because I find the token beautiful.

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  11. JTO
    I have tried for years to crop circles, that is Coins...
    Finally I have got cropping the circular coin down. To those of you who are Photoshop savvy this is dumb as dirt, but I just could not get my programs to do the job. All computer/digital picture are saved in pixels which are square. So cropping a square is easy but a circle is another issue. I tried to search on line a couple of years ago and got a ton of hits on "crop circles"... like aliens and corn fields. But I finally got the real Photoshop and puttered a bit and voila. I have a long way to go to get to the quality of some of you but this is a start.
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  12. JTO
    I have tried for years to crop circles, that is Coins...
    Here is the corrected version of the previous photo. I have corrected the die rotation. The coin was slightly rotated clockwise obverse ~1.7 degrees. This did not account for the full reverse counterclockwise rotation of 7.2 degrees.
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  13. JTO
    Did the mint really sellout to the big marketers with no public release?
    I found this on MCM for an obscene amount. It appears to be a US mint issue and NGC has certified it giving it credibility. On the US Mint website there is no mention of this coin on the product schedule. can anyone tell me is the really what is? It seems to be a direct to marketers sellout by the US Mint completely cutting out the public. On the competitive set under the national park service this is listed with no points assigned. It is not a "non-competitive issue" (ie Norse medals) with 0 points, what the.....

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  14. JTO
    Is this a US Mint issue?
    Did the mint really sellout to the big marketers with no public release?
    I found this on MCM for an obscene amount. It appears to be a US mint issue and NGC has certified it giving it credibility. On the US Mint website there is no mention of this coin on the product schedule. can anyone tell me is the really what is? It seems to be a direct to marketers sellout by the US Mint completely cutting out the public. On the competitive set under the national park service this is listed with no points assigned. It is not a "non-competitive issue" (ie Norse medals) with 0 points, what the.....
    PS sorry for the re-post I did not have the picture correctly added to the first.

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  15. JTO
    I've never heard of a GSA gold hoard release is this just a marketing ploy?
    I was browsing the auction archives at Heritage and came across a group of coins that I had never heard of. They were 2-1/2 dollar Indians slabbed in an NGC holder with the GSA attribution. This makes no sense to me in view of the fact that when gold or bullion was recalled by the federal government in 1933 it was melted into ingots for storage at Fort Knox. I know that in the past dealer's with enough coins to grade and cash to spend can have essentially any attribution placed in the slab. Some hoards are real and some are not. He is anyone from earlier with this particular NGC insert?

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  16. JTO
    When describing the diagnostic wire rim on a 1911-D $2.5 Indian I was told that it was just a manufacturing defect (See bought a pig in a poke)
    In a previous thread about my purchase of a set of gold $2.5 gold Indian coins a pithy comment was made that the "wire rim on a coin is a manufacturing defect". With due respect to RWB, a wire rim is not, in my opinion, a manufacturing defect. First, if it were it should be listed as a Mint Error, it is not. The most well-known example of a coin catalogued not only with this trait in the red book but it is listed separately based on the presence or absence of a wire rim. The coin is, of course, the 1907 $20 High Relief gold piece by Augustus Saint-Gaudens.
    The wire rim occurs when a new die is used with a full planchet. The amount of gold, silver or whatever metal used in the planchet fills all of the devices and body of the coin with enough additional metal to have a small amount flow (under pressure the metal becomes fluid) out around the collar. A wire rim is created. It is found it usually occurs in very early die states or some proof coins. Sure, you could call it a manufacturing defect, but it is most often seen as a desirable trait. The wire rim may disappear over time with wear (the coin had it but it wore off or as the dies wear and as the metal flows there is no longer more metal than the dies can hold.
    To the original point: the vast majority of the 1911-D gold $2.5, strong D coins have a wire rim. I have never seen a 1911-D gold $2.5, strong D without it. This is also a difficult attribute to counterfeit accurately. And so my comment that it is a diagnostic to look for. Yes, if it is not there it does not automatically mean that the coin is bad, but if it is there it is a good sign. That's all...

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  17. JTO
    I bought a set of $2.5 Indians in a capital plastics holder where they have been in my bank until now...
    I agreed to buy a set for 10K form a "friend" who had bought them from an estate. When it came time to do the deal, I looked at the coins and what the $%#&*! I said I remembered them in a black holder and in better shape. Now I find out that there were 2 sets and the first set, the one that got me worked up, he said had already sold. I was not happy. The second set was not at all like the first. Each coin in the first set had had rich luster, so I remember... The second looked about AU at first glance. I offered 7K and he came back with 7.5K. It was housed in a BLUE capital plastics holder and I had to try to grade the coins on the fly. All I really focused on was the 11D. It had the wire rim that is diagnostic of the real deal so I was okay there and look to be a AU-58 or MS-61 or 62. Now almost 10 years later I finally decided to find out how I had done with my pig in a poke. I took all the coins to the Dallas ANA for NGC to grade but only PCGS was doing "on-site" grading, so I submitted the 11-D and 14 to PCGS and sent the rest to NGC. I guess it was not a bad deal after all.
    To see the entire set go to http://coins.www.collectors-society.com/registry/coins/SetListing.aspx?PeopleSetID=188559
    I had a total of 5 out of 15 come back "improperly cleaned" and after careful review I actually agree with 4 of those 5. the 5th coin will go to PCGS or I will just sell it raw.
    Here is the run downof the original 15 coins is submitted:
    1908 AU "improperly cleaned"
    1909 AU "improperly cleaned"
    1910 MS--62
    1911 MS--61
    1911--D MS--61 (PCGS)
    1912 AU "improperly cleaned"
    1913 AU--58
    1914 AU--58 (PCGS)
    1914--D AU "improperly cleaned"
    1915 MS--62
    1925--D MS--62
    1926 Unc "improperly cleaned"
    1927 MS--63
    1928 MS--64+ (of course the most common date)
    1929 MS--62
    What does the term "buying a pig in a poke" refer to? The word poke means bag and if I am not mistaken, the phrase is English and refers to the open markets were one could by a piglet in an unopened bag. The term came to connote buying something without knowing what you're getting because crooked farmers would substitute a cat or dog which had little or no value as consumable meat for the pig.

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  18. JTO
    Let's move on...
    What is the difference you ask? Okay I will again play the straight man and set you up for some insane response.
    Long Red Arrows show tight cluster of curls on the real coin with wide rivers between on the fake
    Short red arrows show fine detail in the hair on the real coin
    Gold arrows show sharp lettering on the real coin and fat lettering on the fake.
    There are so many OBVIOUS sign that this is a fake it is sad. But as a collector who values this forum I 1) want to educate my fellow collectors if I can 2) use this space productively and in the spirit of the hobby and 3) get rid of at least one of the 3 consecutive postings reading "1893 S, Silver Dollar, Morgan.
    My diagnosis is that the pictured Fake is in fact a silver round, that is a 1 ounce silver token.

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  19. JTO
    From his formal top hat to being the foremost seller of the two bit coin, he will be missed.
    I bought this coin at the Long Beach show in 2010 from Mr Cline. Although not a standout even one of the weakest coins in the set and I paid a premium to it "buy from the master" it was well worth the experience. He was willing to talk with me when, at the time, I had not yet read his book and did not have a good knowledge of Standing Liberty Quarters (SLQ). As you can see he was also willing to autograph the slab (see the reverse photo). He was a kind man who had true passion for what I think is our finest coin. I will miss him and I will never sell the coin (regardless of score.)
    Set Link http://coins.www.collectors-society.com/registry/coins/SetListing.aspx?PeopleSetID=138325&Ranking=all

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  20. JTO
    1916 a great transitional year.
    I finally finished my 1916 mint set. It has two great 20th century Key date coins, the Liberty Standing Quarter and the Winged Liberty (Mercury) Dime. I have pictures for each of the coins. Although there was no ranking benefit to adding pictures, I personally enjoy looking at my fellow collectors' sets more when the included pictures of the coins. As the saying goes "A picture is worth 1000 words".
    I don't know if this link will work but I'll give it a try. It is a link to my mint set, I welcome comments, criticism and insight.

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  21. JTO
    PCGS does it again making their "New" holder Worse than their old ones.
    Sometimes I wonder if the people at PCGS are just mean spirited, greedy or maybe both. The new PCGS holders which were introduced a few months ago have added security feature on the bottom of the slab. This consists of a series of capital letters. Presumably to accommodate this feature they made their slabs fatter. Okay...
    Also, NGC lead the collecting community with the edge view slab and I must say that I strongly prefer it to the old style were the edges are covered by plastic. You may notice that the new PCGS slabs no longer have this feature. Or maybe if you paid a premium you can get it. Either way...come on.
    What a surprise, the new PCGS slabs no longer fit in the NGC plastic slab boxes. Since this is one of the primary ways that I store my slabs it has presented me with a bit of the dilemma. They do fit into the intercept shield cardboard box lined with copper to reduce environmental deterioration (corrosion/oxidation). I have a large number of these boxes but after about 5 years the protection becomes exhausted as the Copper molecules in the lining are bound to oxygen. Also the NGC boxes are more space efficient and generally nicer to deal with.
    Granted NGC had a good thing going by selling their boxes as the only high quality all plastic boxes that fit PCGS, NCG, ICG and ANACS. That is now over.
    This appears to one collector as one more step in the war between NGC and PCGS that will lead to complete separation and force collectors to choose one or the other. So far NGC, in my opinion, has taken the high road. They include PCGS coins in the NGC registry (exclusive of world coins). There boxes accommodated all relevant slabs, including PCGS.
    Look at the freedoms and liberties we have given up in the name of security since 9-11-2001. No I'm not saying that something is trivial as coin collecting is in anyway on par with the terrorist attacks on New York. But here is PCGS "upgrading" there slab for "security" reasons in leaving me with a slab lab of lesser quality that doesn't fit into my system. On the whole when put in the perspective of the twin towers my concern is trivial. The just like the twin towers it pisses me off.

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  22. JTO
    Grading services, especially PCGS, seem to give a pass to high ticket or marque coins.
    I tried this once before but it got bogged down on the peripheral issue of the role of the auctions houses in this issue. It drives me crazy when I send in a perfectly good coin and get it back "code 92" or improperly cleaned or maybe that's code brown. Here is another shining example of a coin that is er... Proof-61?
    Or should it be Proof Unc details?
    The upper red arrow shows a protected where the abrasive cleaner could not reach and the lower arrow show the "hairlines" or improper cleaning marks on Liberty's leg. These features eliminate the possibility that these are just highly reflective die polishing marks.
    What if this were a 1983 Kennedy half with the same surface, what do you think the grade would be?

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  23. JTO
    I found the 1916 in FH I had been waiting for.
    After a long wait I found a full head 1916 Liberty Standing Quarter with original surfaces and a great strike. What do you all think? The 1916 FH is always much softer than the 1917 FH. In my opinion the 1916 is not really a "type one" to be grouped with the 1917's. It has a completely different master hub. Look at the stars on the gateway or the letters on the obverse and on "United States of America" on the reverse. The stars have a softer edge on the 16 and the letters of the both the obverse and reverse are more rounded on the 1916 compared to the 1917.

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  24. JTO
    My original thesis was that Marquis coins get preferential treatment but I could not leave well enough alone...
    I am glad that we got the discussion that we got. 21 people felt it worth their time to write a response and over 200 views. The original Title was "Marquis coins get a pass from PCGS" Then I changed it to "Is this fair grading? See the grade PCGS gave and guess who submitted it."
    The point made by Mark on his posting was a good one. It did not escape my attention that the holder was an middle generation PCGS holder. It is NOT a BLUE (recent label) nor GREEN (OLD) but blackk print on a white background with the bar code. This dates the slab to the 2004 to 2008 time frame. The consequence of that as pointed out bluntly pointed out by Kaiser14 is that Stacks could not have submitted the coin for grading.
    But to Kaiser14 don't through the baby out with the bath water. The title was what would you grade this coin. The primary thesis if you will was that Marquis coins seem to get the benefit of the doubt in the grading process. Another way to look at the same thing is that both PCGS and NGC and ANACS and PCI want Marquis coins in their holders. Duh...
    I made a side comment about the auction house and in fairness probably should've saved that for a separate post. But here we are. Remembering back to my first Heritage auction experience in Santa Clara in 1998 my experience has been that coins graded by auction houses tend to get the benefit of the doubt. No I'm not talking about a conspiracy. Coins fairly graded AU55 are not being put in MS65 holders.
    But for Kaiser14, I will present the second half of my thesis more clearly and as an opinion. When I send in a coin like this its returned details grade CORROSION. When an organization that measures its revenue stream in 100s of millions of dollars submits the same coin it is viewed as Fine 15 with a granular surface. For them scratch or even gouge become contact marks. You get the picture. My opinion only!
    I am not opining that there is a great conspiracy but rather this is simple economics. Sure the grading is blinded. But when a coin is number 140 of 750 it's not too hard to figure out that you're dealing with a major player and not a small time collector or even dealer. Simple economics. Kaiser14 is America and for better or worse the hobby that we love is based on a thesis of Capitalism. And just to throw more fecal matter in the air the same coin graded at 11 AM on a Monday may get a different level of scrutiny than a coin that finishes the process at 4:59 PM on Friday, its just life.
    Thanks for the great discussion

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  25. JTO
    ridiculous variations in grading standards depending on the coin and who submitted it.
    PCGS is like a politician, you get the grade you pay for. I first recognize that something was not kosher about 6 years ago when I bid on and won a 1934--S Peace Dollar in a PCGS AU-58 holder from Heritage. The photographs were washed out and that when I got the coin in hand... WOW talk about ugly. At best, the coin should have graded XF-45.
    I concluded; Marquis coins submitted by auction houses get upgraded and put in holders that regular coins submitted by regular people would never dream of getting. But was told: ...Oh no the grading is completely anonymous and above Board... This coin is in the Stacks auction and as a chain cent would qualify as Marquis coin. If I submitted this coin it would come back with details grading, corroded. How can you explain this coin getting a pass on the corrosion and being slabbed in a regular PCGS Holder? The reverse is worse. Look at the coin and then at the holder, can you honestly tell me that coin belongs in that holder?

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